Jar mixes are great gifts because it only takes a few minutes to prepare them, they look scrumptious, and they’re very easy for the recipient to make. There are many ways to do jar mixes, according to your budget. There are soup jar mixes, brownie jar mixes, even pasta jar mixes.
If you have a slender budget with which to work purchase a standard cake mix from the grocery store. Pour the powdered mix into a quart-size canning jar and you’re almost done. Print a little card that has the instructions for making the cake. Be sure and first list the ingredients they’ll need to add, such as egg and oil. The card can be as cute or as matter-of-fact as you wish.
The jar mix lid is decorated by cutting a square or circle of fabric with pinking sheers. Remove the lid from the ring and cover the lid with the cloth. Replace the ring and screw the lid onto the jar. Poke a hole in the card and thread a piece of ribbon through it. Tie the ribbon around the ring of the jar lid.
There are other very inexpensive and simple recipes you can make into jar mixes. One requires the purchase of simple dry soup mix. Since soup mix doesn’t take up enough space to fill the jar consider placing some unique crackers, covered with plastic wrap, in the jar. Remove the soup mix from it’s grocery package and put it in a zipper-lock bag. Add tag and cloth piece for a beautiful gift.
Another easy one is to fill the jar with small, uniquely-shaped pasta and add a dry tomato/basil mix. You can find dry mixes where gravy mixes and spices are sold. You can also add a small packet of Parmesan to the jar. You don’t have to use the standard canning jars for the jar mix. You can decorate the lid of a clean mayonnaise jar or even place the ingredients in a beautiful vase.
Some fancier mixes, which cost a little more to make, look fabulous because the ingredients are placed in the jar by layers. This layering gives an artistic “sand art” look to the jar mix. Most any recipe, so long as it contains two or three dry ingredients, can be made into a layered jar mix. Cornbread, for example, makes a great jar mix. Place 3 cups of sifted flour into the bottom of a jar. Layer on 3 cups of yellow cornmeal. Next add one and a half cups of instant non-fat dry milk. Then place 2 and a half tablespoons of baking powder, 2 and a half teaspoons of salt, and 3 tablespoons of sugar on top.
The tag should read: Place all dry ingredients in a bowl and add 3/4 cup of shortening – cut into small pieces, 3 eggs – lightly beaten, and 1 cup of water. Mix well. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Place mix in greased 8″x8″ pan and bake for 15 to 20 minutes.
Brownie mixes are simple and look great layered in the jar. First put in 2 cups of sugar, then 1 cup of cocoa, then 1 cup of flour. Fix a packet of chopped nuts to place on top of the dry ingredients. The card should read: Add 1 cup of softened butter and 4 eggs. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Mix all ingredients well and pour into a greased 9″x12″ pan. Sprinkle with nuts. Bake for 40 minutes.
Look through some of your recipes, or go online to find simple recipes, then make your own jar mixes to give throughout the year for birthdays, holidays and special occasions. Make several mixes at one time and you’ll always have something on hand for unexpected occasions or regular holidays. The jar mixes are loved by everyone and they can even be made in diabetic varieties, sure to please.